Posted in A Moment in My Life

“An Awful Witness”

A Moment in My Life – Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Jeannie Yee Davis

If my life depended on me recognizing people, I’m a goner. Remember the days we frequented crowded restaurants where servers were plentiful, all dressed in uniform or the same color and type of clothing? Top that off with all of them being the same gender sporting a similar haircut and possibly similar body types, and I wouldn’t be able to tell you which one of them was my server. I needed my server to have a streak of purple hair or something different that makes them stand out.

Name tags are fabulous. I often wished everybody wore name tags at my hubby’s annual family picnic. Once a year, we got to see the whole Davis & Gallegos clan, but only once a year. Now, let me tell you, there are many on the Gallegos side, and all the uncles and cousins look alike to me. Each of them is equally loving and friendly. I love them all. We greet each other with bear hugs and warm greetings, so happy to see each other, but it’s embarrassing. I don’t know who I just spoke with, and with each passing year, it becomes that much harder to own up to having no clue. Luckily, I’m not the only one who has no clue, but that doesn’t make me feel any better. Maybe one day, we’ll do the name tags, and for once, I’ll get it down.

One day at church, I volunteered along with many ladies to coordinate an event. There were some new people I hadn’t seen before, and in my efforts to be friendly, I chatted with the ladies, and you’d think I would recognize them after a spin. I thought I was doing well until I asked this lady her name, and she said, “Ning Ning.” What’s wrong with this picture, you ask? Well, a while later, I asked my companion her name, and she said, “Ning Ning.” It’s hard to miss that unique name, but I honestly didn’t recognize her.

To make matters worse, I did it one more time. This time, Ning Ning grimaced, but she kindly answered me again. I was beyond embarrassed, but what can I do except shut up and stop asking the ladies their names. Thank God Ning Ning didn’t hold it against me. Since that hilarious episode, Ning Ning and I have become friends. 

Can you imagine my life now with everybody wearing a mask? The other day, I was at the Kaiser laboratory having my labs done. On my way to my technician’s station, a tiny Asian woman was standing by the restroom door. I nodded my head and said hi as I passed her. She was a stranger to me, but I greet everybody that way. Suddenly, she ran over to me and attempted to hug me as she greeted me by name. I stood back and stared at what I could see of her face, and she was any Asian woman USA to me. She said, “It’s Mia!” and that helped place her, but I tell you, that didn’t make her look any more familiar to me.

I practically live at Costco, and from FB, I learned that some of my peeps are more of a Costco resident than I am. I’m surprised that I’ve never run into any of them there. Then again, would I recognize them? I have to count on them recognizing me. I always imagined that if I were to run into my FB peep, MM, aka Michael Mar, it would be at one of the Costco warehouses we frequent since he lives there. To my surprise, it wasn’t at Costco but rather at Jack’s in San Bruno that I would run into him for the first time. The morning we chanced meeting each other, if MM hadn’t recognized me and spoke up, I wouldn’t have suspected I knew him. The funny thing was he acknowledged me with my mask on, and although he wasn’t wearing a mask due to the newly lifted mask mandate, I still didn’t recognize him right away. After he started talking to me, I realized that it was MM. I was amazed that he recognized me mask and all. How do people do that? I envy them. For me, mask or no mask, I’m a lost cause. I can only hope I’ll never need to be a witness because I would make an awful witness.

One thought on ““An Awful Witness”

  1. Absolutely right about name tags. It branches out past Davis, Gallegos & Terry. The children, significant others, grandchildren, friends of friends. Hard to keep track & remember everyone’s name I think it’s interesting when we can recognize people with masks on. My patients coming out of anesthesia sometimes gets me confused their asian doctors. They only go on eye shape. We all wear the same scrubs, so it can be confusing. I wish we didn’t have to wear masks. This one patient had the biggest smile once his mask was off, when he had something to drink. Agree family picnic should come with names too.

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